Marlborough lies at the north-eastern end of the South Island between Tasman Bay and Cook Strait. A rectangular-shaped piece of territory, it is some 130 miles long and some 50 miles broad. The limits of the region correspond to those of the old provincial boundary and to the area contained with the four counties of Sounds, Marlborough, Awatere, and Kaikoura. Together with their interior boroughs, these counties form the basis for the collection of statistics. Blenheim (population 11,956, 1961) is the largest town of the region, which in 1961 had a total population of 27,957 (1·15 per cent of the New Zealand total population) of whom 2·60 per cent were registered as Maoris.